“America is all about speed, hot nasty bad ass speed” -Eleanor Roosevelt
This is a quote from Talladega Nights, the ballad of Ricky Bobby. Eleanor Roosevelt didn’t actually say this but it is a pretty accurate quote.
We do love to go fast and even more we love to have fun. Go karting is a hobby, sport, passion and community with endless possibilities.
What is Go Karting?
We will speak generally about this topic. The reason for this is because go kart racing and go karting can be two different animals. Regardless, the purpose is to have fun!
Go karting is a way for people to experience the thrill of going fast, racing, doing donuts, or whatever you want to do on your mini machine. For a more in depth overview of Go Karting you can visit other pages on Better Karting.
The go kart itself can be simple. You have four tires, an engine, chassis, steering wheel and a seat. If you google go kart you will find thousands of different types of go karts which all serve their own purpose.
If you choose to start a hobby in go karting you will not be disappointed as there are no requirements to build the go kart to any specification. You can fully customize your go kart with anything you like. If you choose to go kart racing then you will have more guidelines to follow to be within the rule books.
Go karting dates back to the 50s and the machines were extremely simple compared to the go karts today. You could ask yourself why everything became so complicated? Racing go karts will give you an adrenaline rush like no other. It will also make you return for more. Humans are competitive by nature. People started customizing their go karts to be faster, better handling, and better looking.
To some, go karting is more than just fun. It is a platform. A spring board you could say to push them to the next level. All over the world go kart drivers elevate to the most elite forms of motorsports. For example NASCAR, F1, Indy Car and many more. Go karting builds many of the fundamental skills for driving race cars at the next level. Below is a quick list of some of the benefits from go karting.
Benefits from Go Karting
Even driving your backyard fun kart requires incredible focus. Everything can happen fast when you’re 1” off the ground going 50mph. You have to pay attention and stay focused while driving. In racing there are many distractions around you on the track. You have sweat dripping down your face, the drivers in front of you, the parents giving you signals, bumps on the track and many more. These will all become trivial and minute the more time you spend in the seat. Go Karting can teach you to prioritize and focus on what matters at that time to make the best decision. This will translate to other facets in your life going forward.
When you start racing, whether it’s on the track or you and your friends doing time trials in the backyard, the emotions can get the best of you. You may not think you will get emotional but, when someone goes a little faster, your inner competitor comes out and you push a little harder each time. When you accomplish that quick time and you become the fastest you are proud of what you’ve done. On the flip side if someone on the track interferes with your performance you can get really upset. Your emotional reaction is to confront them and ask them what were you thinking! But emotions can get the best of us. There will be many times you are tempted to be upset. You need to temper the emotions and focus on the task at hand.
All go karts have become very technical. You can purchase go karts today and do nothing but put gas in them and go. Or plug in the battery and charge up an electric go kart and hit it. Even the basic necessities of go karts teach valuable lessons on how to work on small engines or motors. When you start racing it is essential to understand how your go kart works. This makes tuning easier and as a driver you will be a better karter as well.
In racing communication is key. You need to be able to communicate with your team helping you. You need to be able to communicate about what happens on the track and how your kart is handling so the proper adjustments can be made. This comes back to Focus and emotions. If you do not stay focused and your emotions get the best of you, you cannot communicate what is going on. The result is chassis adjustments or driver corrections cannot be accurately made to help you go faster.
Whether you like it or not it is going to happen. There will be a time when something happens on the track and people will get upset. There will be confrontation throughout your life so you might as well get some experience at the gokart track to help prepare you.
Physical? Yea right, racing isn’t a physically demanding sport. Go to your local indoor go kart track like Autobahn Indoor Racing, or K1 Speed. You race one or two sessions then come talk to me about being physically fit for racing. Racing utilizes some key muscles. If you become tired and your arms are weak you will start to miss your marks and mistakes occur.
What do I do now?
This article may have sparked your interest in go karting. Personally writing it brought up some memories of mistakes I have made and successes I have had. Go karting is a lot of fun. I would recommend searching through some more posts on Better Karting to see if go karting is the sport/hobby for you.